do southern peas produce up to frost, or not?

lakedallasmary(8 - North Central TX)April 30, 2007

I was wondering how long southern peas produce? Will they produce till frost? I am trying to figure out of I can plant anything after them in the fall.

I know some of the bush varieties set all at once. I would think that the viners would produce longer, but possibly have trouble in the cooler wet fall we have here in north texas.

Here are the ones I am planting this year

Bushy I believe


zipper cream



texas long horn

yard longs

botswana blackeye

not sure if bush or viney


purple hull

peking black

ozark razor back

mississippi pink eye - sets all at once ??

If anyone has had experience with any of the above, please let me know if they produce all at once and/or how long they produce. Or at what temperature they stop producing, or succume to pests due to moisture or cold. I would also like to know which are bushy and which are vinely so I know how far apart to plant. I was thinking every 3" for bushy and 1 seed a foot for vinely. Any ideas, please post.



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zeedman Zone 5 Wisconsin

OK, I live in Wisconsin... so I am probably the least experienced in "Southern peas". ;-) But I'll get the ball rolling.

Of the two varieties of "peas" that I grew last year, one was bush & finished quite early, one was semi-vining & went until frost. Our climate differs substantially, so take that for what it's worth. I used 6" apart for the bush & 12" (after thinning) for vining; the plants filled the space, and bore heavily. But I could probably have spaced the bush rows more closely, perhaps 30" apart (I used 36").

As for yardlongs... I grow a lot of them, and can tell you that if they are kept picked, they will bear nearly continuously. Even in my short seasons, I can get both immature pods & dry seeds from the same plants (for early varieties). The purple varieties need more heat, so they are the first to slow down when the nights begin to cool... but are probably better adapted to your hot summers.

I experimented with spacing for yardlongs, and since I want them to climb vigorously, my optimal spacing was around 15". But if you don't want them to climb as high, you can crowd them (4" apart or so) and they will revert to more of a half-runner habit. This will also give the highest yield... but at that spacing, the risk of disease increases.

BTW, my yardlongs were inoculated prior to planting, and had the most & largest nodules of any of my legumes - some 1/4" wide.

Just my 2 (northern) c's. ;-)

    Bookmark   April 30, 2007 at 6:49PM
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Spring planted peas probably won't produce much once we get into late summer/fall--the plants just seem to get "tired". A mid to late summer planting will produce into the fall. As to whether they produce up to frost, it depends on when that frost is, and the weather preceding it. Long cold spells, even if they don't kill the peas, will cause the plants to look pretty sad. As you probably know, in Texas we often have nice warm weather right up to a sudden cold blast in November.


    Bookmark   May 3, 2007 at 11:31PM
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lakedallasmary(8 - North Central TX)

thanks, that the info I was looking for

    Bookmark   May 4, 2007 at 4:25PM
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Purple Hulled Peas are bush types, just to answer the question above.

I've got some Gray-speckled Palapyes going, they sprouted last week. I don't know if they are bush types or not, kind of figured I'd worry about it at thinning time. However, beyond the blurb on the site where I bought them, I can't find out any info on this particular variety. I believe they are just an African version of the basic Southern Pea, perhaps one of the strains that the coloniual southern pea came from?

    Bookmark   May 6, 2007 at 7:03PM
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lakedallasmary(8 - North Central TX)

still I am interested in which are bush and which vine. Thanks for the info on the purple hull

as far as I know the Mississippi pink eye are the only one I listed that set all at once. I guess that make them a bush plant

    Bookmark   May 6, 2007 at 7:20PM
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